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    • A Fair Voter ID Law!
  • To:All
  • 11/28/12
  • texccandaj

Give Secretary of State Ross Miller credit for moving the dialogue forward, at least. (From Las Vegas Review Journal)

Miller created a stir Tuesday when he unveiled a voter photo identification plan for Nevada that avoids the problems seen in other states, most notably voter disenfranchisement.

The headline of a Review-Journal electronic news flash - "Miller calls for voter ID law in Nevada" - was sure to arouse concerns, especially in liberal circles. But Miller's plan - based on an idea from Minnesota's progressive Secretary of State Mark Ritchie - is nothing like voter ID requirements that have sparked resentment and lawsuits in many other states.

"This is an alternative to voter ID, and, I think, a much better alternative," Miller said Tuesday.

It would work like this: Photos from the state's DMV database of driver's licenses and state ID cards would be used to form an electronic "poll book," which election workers would use to verify a voter's identity at the polls. If a voter wasn't in the database, he or she would be photographed at the polling place and asked to fill out an affidavit certifying eligibility to vote.

Nobody would be forced to show his or her ID at the polls, as is required in some states. (Bills to require that in Nevada have been introduced but failed in recent sessions of the Legislature.)

And nobody would be forced to get an ID who does not now have one, a key objection to voter-ID laws in other states. If you're an eligible elector, you can still vote, provided you allow yourself to be photographed.

The plan provides a higher level of voter verification than we have now: All you have to do currently is show up, give your name and sign a book, allowing a poll worker to compare your signature to the one on file.

It's less likely a would-be fraudster would agree not only to sign an affidavit but also to be photographed in the process of committing a felony. "If you're interested in preventing that particular kind of fraud, this seems to be one way to do it," Miller said.

It's also less likely that a legitimate voter who doesn't have a state-issued photo ID would be prevented from voting at the polls, which means nobody will be disenfranchised. That's why Miller and many other Democrats oppose voter ID laws. "That alone, I think, is a reason to have significant reservations to put that in place," he said.

The drawbacks? The cost: Minnesota initially estimated a $20 million cost to implement the program in that state, home to 5.3 million people (Nevada has an estimated population of 2.7 million.) The final cost has yet to be determined, Miller said. But it's possibly cheaper than providing free ID cards to all residents who request them, which might be required to implement a standard voter-ID law.

So far, the idea has found favor with Republicans who previously backed voter ID laws.

"I like it," said Assemblyman Ira Hansen, author of a voter-ID bill that went nowhere in the 2011 session. "This would make everybody happy."

Hansen said because the idea had been introduced by a Democrat, it had a much better chance of surviving the Democratically controlled Legislature.

But he said the intention of his bill and Miller's idea is the same: ensuring voter integrity. "We're both trying to get to the same place," he said.

The move is also smart politics for Miller, who has aspirations to run for attorney general and, later, governor. Because it satisfies Republican concerns about voter integrity and avoids problems related to minority voter disenfranchisement, it may succeed where other proposals failed, bogged down in a quagmire of racial and partisan politics.

Give Miller credit, at the very least, for moving the dialogue out of that swamp.

Steve Sebelius is a Review-Journal political columnist and author of the blog SlashPolitics.com

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  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/28/12
  • Danallrighty
It is easy now to get a photo ID. What nonsense.

Edited 11/28/12   by  Danallrighty
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/28/12
  • texccandaj

This wouldn't suppress any qualified voters. I guess you have a problem with that.

Can you name what part of this proposal is unjust?

  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/28/12
  • Danallrighty
Requiring a photo ID does not suppress any qualified voters.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/28/12
  • jgrangers2

It's a great way to solve a problem that doesn't really exist. I think we should spend our time worrying about things like this:

http://takingnote.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/26/why-florida-really-changed-its-voting-rules/

  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Ultimate_Lou2013
...Puerto Rico has used a voter ID card (with photo) for decades...you go register to vote with proof of who you are (DL, birth certificate and/or proof of residence) have your picture taken and the card is issued the same way as a license...on election day, you show your voter ID, they check it against an active list then you vote...I still have my original ID from '76...
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • texccandaj

"Requiring a photo ID does not suppress any qualified voters. "

Doing it this way does not. Voting is a right not a privilege. Having a drivers license is a privilege not a right. People that currently are voting should not have to jump through any hoops to continue to vote.

  • Reply to this Message
Message 545628.8 was deleted
  • 11/29/12
  • texccandaj

Well in Nevada,you currently do not need a photo id to vote, they have your signature on file which theyhave on record. Doing it this way, they will have your photo on record to check against when you vote.

many people that currently vote don't have photo id.

  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Ultimate_Lou2013
...maybe you can get hit by a truck and permantly leave this board...and this world...
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Ultimate_Lou2013
...I can agree that would be enough...but wouldn't they have to update a persons signature every so often?...my signature has changed from then until now...and they way I sign checks is different to how I may sign documents...but that's just me...
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Danallrighty
You don't need a drivers license to get a photo ID. Again, it is very easy. This is just charade by the leftist loonies.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Danallrighty
You are not disenfranchised, are you? I'll drink to that.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Kranesback
I know you only think of the constitution as a form of toliet paper, but the ease of obtaining a photo id has absolutley nothing to do with the constitutionality of requiring a photo id to vote. The idea presented here does seem to get around that fairly though, although I'm sure you hate it because it fails to illegallly disenfranchise voters who are largely members of minority groups.

Edited 11/29/12   by  Kranesback
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Danallrighty
Are you saying that it is harder for as minority to get a photo ID? You have been drinking the koolaid
of the leftist loonies. You also sound arrogant.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • jgrangers2
No, he's saying that there is no such thing as a free ID in this country and voting has to be a completely free endeavor. It is a right and thus should cost nothing. Forcing somebody to pay for an ID so they can vote is the equivalent of a poll tax.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Danallrighty
So, if a photo ID was free, then you wouldn't object?
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • BBallBuff
I am surprised that more of our citizens don't know what you just wrote.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • Kranesback
not answering for jgrangers, but yes. the issue here is that requiring a photo id cannot constitutionally be used to hide a poll tax. If the id was free, that eliminates that obstacle.
  • Reply to this Message
  • 11/29/12
  • BBallBuff
I expected this board to move more quickly than the Cardinal board since it is in a bigger market. It is still pretty slow, however.
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